There is nothing better than a hot bowl of soup on a cold, rainy day. So whip up a pot of soup and warm up from the inside out! And tomato soup is one of our favorites, especially when you add a splash of crème fraiche and cheddar cheese! This rich, creamy bisque has a wonderful hearty old-fashioned flavor. It might just be your new favorite soup.
Ingredients (serves 20 people):
10 each tomatoes 5X6, chargrilled
10 pound can whole tomatoes, peeled
2 ounces tomato paste
3 each onions, sliced, caramelized
4 each red bell peppers, stemmed, seeded, cut in half, chargrilled
3 ounces tequila
0.5 ounces chipotle puree
16 ounces heavy cream
Salt and Pepper, to taste
4 teaspoon thyme
6 leaves basil
3 teaspoon garlic, minced
64 ounces vegetable stock
20 ounces crème fraiche
2 pounds cheddar cheese
1 quart micro greens
10 ounces basil oil
Step 1: Chargrill the onions, peppers, and tomatoes.
Step 2: Heat a stock pot to medium high, then add oil and the onions and continue to caramelize, add the garlic and thyme, then add the bell peppers and charred tomatoes. Deglaze with a little tequila, chipotle peppers and tomato paste.
Step 3: Add the tomatoes from the can and the vegetable stock and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Add the basil and simmer for about 2 hours very slowly, stirring as needed, add the cream and reduce for only 20 more minutes.
Step 4: Use the stick blender to pulse through the soup, add seasoning.
Step 5: Fill the blender ½ way with soup to be pureed, using the smoking gun, flame it, and fill the blender with a cloud of smoke, cover and let it sit for 3-5 minutes.
Step 6: Puree the soup until perfectly smooth, nice and thick, taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
Step 7: Repeat 5 and 6 until all soup is pureed and ready.
Step 8: For the garnish, add 1 to 4 tablespoons of cheese (depending on the size you want) on a baking sheet covered with a silicone mat or parchment paper oiled on both sides. Flatten the tops so they are in more or less an even pile. There should be at least two inches between smaller mounds, 4 inches between larger ones. Bake 5 to 6 minutes until they are a light golden brown.
Step 9: Pour hot soup into a bowl, quenelle a spoon of crème fraiche and place in the center, drizzle basil oil around the soup, top the crème with a cheese crisp and micro greens and serve. Enjoy!
Photo Credit: Marlin Salazar Photography